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Montgomery County, Maryland, Enacts Law Restricting Employers from Employees’ Healthcare Information 

05 Jun

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Update Applicable to:Effective date
All employers with at least 1 worker in Montgomery CountyJuly 26, 2024


What happened?

On March 19, 2024, Montgomery Bill 44-23, also known as the Climate Assessment Bill, is designed to defend the health records of job applicants in Montgomery County from unwarranted, probing questions by employers.


What are the details?

Key Bites

  • Prohibition on Requesting Health Information: Employers are prohibited from requesting health care or reproductive health information from applicants.
  • Prohibition on Considering Health Information: Employers are not allowed to consider health care or reproductive health information as a factor in determining whether to hire applicants.
  • Exception for Business-Related Health Information: Employers are only permitted to request and consider “business-related health care information”, defined as “health care information that is necessary to evaluate whether an applicant meets a minimum qualification for a position”.
  • Economic Implications: The bill may have economic implications for employers because it may prevent certain businesses from using this information to screen for certain characteristics they believe may impact medical claims or job performance.


Business Considerations

  • Employers should understand the details of Montgomery Bill 44-23: what is prohibited and what exceptions apply.
  • Employers should review and update their current onboarding process and practices to ensure they do not involve requesting or considering health care or reproductive health information from applicants.
  • Employers should train their HR personnel, onboarding team, and managers about the new limitations, ensuring they understand what information they can and cannot require.
  • Employers should update their company policies to comply with the new law, including the onboarding policy, privacy policy, and any other relevant policies.
  • Employers should be transparent with job applicants about what information they will and will not request during the hiring process.
  • Respect Privacy: Employers should respect the privacy of job applicants. They should remember that the goal of this law is to protect the rights of job applicants and prevent potential discrimination based on health status.

Source References


Resources

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This communication is intended solely for the purpose of conveying information. The present post might incorporate hyperlinks directing readers to websites managed by third-party entities. The inclusion of any links within this communication is meant to serve as points of reference and could encompass opinion articles from various law firms, articles from HR associations, official websites, news releases, and documents of government agencies, and other relevant third-party sources. Vensure has no authority over these external websites and bears no responsibility for their content. Furthermore, Vensure does not endorse the materials present on these websites. The contents of this communication should not be interpreted as legal advice or as a legal standpoint concerning specific facts or scenarios. Nor should it be deemed an exhaustive compilation of facts potentially pertinent to federal, state, or local laws. It is strongly advised that employers solicit legal guidance from an employment attorney when undertaking actions in response to any legal updates provided. This is due to the possibility of future alterations occurring in federal, state, and local laws, regulations, as well as the directives and guidelines issued by governing agencies. These changes may transpire at any given time, potentially rendering certain portions of the content within this update void or inaccurate.

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